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Old 01-17-2010, 09:56 PM   #2401
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Default Re: Novak News!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by acd692 View Post
Is marian still the trainer of novak?
Sorry to confuse you,yeah he is but apparantly he is taking a break for the next few weeks,not sure if it's exactly true,I don't think it will be as long as they say though and it was only the one article that was written about it
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Old 01-18-2010, 06:39 AM   #2402
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Default Re: Novak News!!

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Originally Posted by Amber Spyglass View Post
Yeah,I know what you mean,I kind of wish Marian was still with him,cos I think he was kind of responsible for looking after his baseline game,Martin wasn't exactly a great baseliner himself.I know variety is important but I don't think volleys are all that necessary at the end of the day.I think it's powerful consistent groundstrokes that trouble Federer and Nadal really,just look at Nole at AO 08 and Delpo at US 09,they barely made three volleys all tournament.I just hope Nole doesn't veer too much from his original game,I remember Roddick a couple of years ago working with Jimmy Connors and every match he was just rushing to net,Fed made a fool of him with easy passing shots so many times,I really hope when they talk about "aggresion" and "attacking" they mean his groundstrokes too and not just going to net and taking ridiculous risks.Nole did mention his baseline game in his presser though so at least he is aware that it's consistency might have slipped a bit,maybe he hopes to put it all together eventually,I hope so
Totally agree with you. The British media (and I think US and Australian too), are obsessed by going back to S & V style tennis, and so are the players of a certain era that played mainly in that style. I was actually bought up playing it myself if I'm honest - in the UK on grass at school But although I like to watch some variety in tennis matches, and hate players who never move off the baseline, I can't stand net-rushers either. By all means, let Nole practice volleying as another dimension to his all-round game, but spending too much time and effort on it, could affect the rest of his game to his detriment I feel.
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Old 01-18-2010, 12:58 PM   #2403
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I hope the S/V will not backfire on him.... Practicing is one thing but not playing really matches. S/V is important part of variety and all-around game, but in today's tennis it just does not work, because of the new rackets and equipment all made to please baseliners. I hope his groundstrokes are there, because if not he will have to deal with passing shots and that is pur suicide... If he converts to S/V only his AO 2010 life will be short living....... I hate to see an early exit.
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Old 01-18-2010, 01:29 PM   #2404
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I think what Todd needs to do is improve Nole's serve,specially the second serve,it is not what it used to be
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Old 01-19-2010, 01:25 PM   #2405
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2010 AO Round1 v Gimeno-Traver

Q. How did you feel after? Looked pretty comfortable in the end.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's the first match of the year so it was a little bit slower start, but I think that I had across the net an opponent who played exceptionally well today.

Conditions were a little bit, you know, strange, because it was ‑‑ the balls were really fluffy and it was really slow. It was hard to make a winner. He's a very fast player. He was going for the shots and didn't have anything to lose. You could see that. He had a very high percentage of the first serves.

I was struggling in the first set. That's no secret. In the end I picked it up, and I was really happy overall with how I handled things.


Q. The passing shot he made in the 9th or 14th game, you had a smile to yourself. Was that a catalyst for, Right, I'll get you for that?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, just a smile of being happy of winning the point, I guess.


Q. He won the point, though.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, so, I mean, I don't know. I can't remember. I mean, what does it matter, really?


Q. What do you think the key is gonna be for you to do as well as you want to at this tournament?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I guess, you know, the Grand Slams are different than all the other tournaments because they're two weeks long and you play best of five. Every opponent you play against, you have to get him seriously and not underestimate, especially in the opening rounds where the players are lower ranked and really ready to give everything and have nothing to lose.

So the question is if you want to be tested early on or you want to go easy and smoothly past the rounds, past the opponents, and save the energy for second week. It's really hard to say. Both ways are good, I guess.

For me, as I said, to get a little bit more time on the court today was actually positive. So physically I'm ready. I mean, I'm moving well, and more or less game‑wise overall I think I'm playing good enough tennis to challenge the best players in the world.

Now I have to take one match at time.


Q. Mentally do you feel better prepared than you did, say, during the Grand Slams last year?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: During the Australian Open last year, I had a lot of, well, mental barriers I can say, because I was ‑‑ I positioned myself. First time I had the role of defending champion on a Grand Slam. So it was really difficult to cope with the pressure and expectations that I had. It was a different feel. You know, a feel that I never experienced before.

And I changed the racquet and I was struggling to find an exact racquet that I'm comfortable with. There was a lot of stories, should I change it? Should I have changed it or not? Obviously it all had an impact on my results.

But this year I feel that I can do better on Grand Slams.


Q. You were having great fun two days ago in the Hit‑for‑Haiti game. Will you keep this kind of rhythm during this tournament?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, fun is fun, I guess, and work is work. I have to try to give my best and win on the court. That's my main priority.

Of course I try to enjoy every single moment of my life, and things I do off court. Actually, I was very happy with the way that exhibition went. I think we should gather around more often and try to have those exhibitions more often together.


Q. For the victims?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Exactly. And charity as well. It's really hard to gather all the players from men's and women's tennis in one event. It was a great idea, and we all tried to contribute in the best possible way for the people that need help.


Q. Do you think it's realistic to say that there's maybe six or seven guys that could win this tournament? A lot of Grand Slams you go in and hear that, but there's usually three or four guys. This time seems like a bunch of guys.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I agree. I think this is one of the most exciting Grand Slams in the last five or six years because of the reason you just said: You have a group of players that are able to lift the trophy in two weeks.

Next of course two big favorites, Federer and Nadal. I think Murray, Del Potro, Roddick, and myself. Davydenko plays exceptionally well lately. Gonna be interesting for the fans and for the sport to see who will win it in the end.


Q. I read some of your comments on the World Cup of Tennis. Clarify your position. You've got a big Davis Cup match coming up, and I would say that's been important to Serbia before.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Davis Cup is a different competition. It's very unique because it's a team competition, which, you know, you don't get to have team competitions in our sport that much. So for every country to have a Davis Cup, especially to be in the World Group, means a lot.

But, you know, we're still discussing with the current leadership and with the people who are in charge of our sport, and of course between ourselves, between players, what we can make to ‑‑ what we can do to make this sport better and more attractive to fans.

I think the ATP right now has a good understanding for what we want. But I wouldn't talk further than that. World Team Cup Tennis and bunch of other things are just ideas. They're still not, you know, going to realization.
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Old 01-19-2010, 05:48 PM   #2406
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Default Re: Novak News!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by shuhrat View Post
2010 AO Round1 v Gimeno-Traver

Q. The passing shot he made in the 9th or 14th game, you had a smile to yourself. Was that a catalyst for, Right, I'll get you for that?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, just a smile of being happy of winning the point, I guess.



Quote:
Q. He won the point, though.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, so, I mean, I don't know. I can't remember. I mean, what does it matter, really?



Quote:
[b]NOVAK DJOKOVIC: overall I think I'm playing good enough tennis to challenge the best players in the world.
Oh really?
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:30 PM   #2407
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Default Re: Novak News!!

Amber Spyglass and Noleta
Thanks for clarifying
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:36 AM   #2408
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2010 AO Round2 v Marco Chiudinelli

Q. A slow start, and then on paper it looked a relatively easy game. You seemed a bit frustrated.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, definitely I was frustrated, especially at start of the match, because he was really giving it to me. He was very aggressive and stepping in and using ever opportunity that has been given to him.

So automatically I just became too defensive and didn't really make too much. Just waiting for his mistakes. That was a little issue there, but I managed to make that transition from being defensive to being offensive and changing pace and holding the game in control in the second and third set.

In the fourth I struggled a little bit, but I managed to make that important break.


Q. Why did you struggle in the fourth?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, why? Everybody plays tennis, I guess. You can't underestimate anybody. I was aware of his quality and aware that he likes to ‑‑ he likes the fast play. You know, I tried to play some high balls and, you know, change the rhythm all the time.

It worked and then in that fourth set, he stepped it up a little bit more. Just fortunate to go through.


Q. What are your expectations for the tournament? Would you feel it would be unsuccessful if you achieved anything less than the title? Where have you set the bar for yourself coming into the season?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, look, I always try to have the highest possible ambitions, and that's to win the tournament. But I'm well aware of the, you know, quality of the other players. Of course, some of the other players have probably more expectations than me to win the title. That's normal.

But I try not to put too much pressure on myself. I try to take one match at a time. I really had some bad experiences last year. Unfortunately finished the way I did. So I'm just trying to focus on my own matches put the best possible effort. Then I believe the results will come then.


Q. When did you work on in the off‑season to help improve your game from last season?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: We were unfortunate because we didn't have a lot of time in the off‑season. Tried to use it in the best way. That's one of the short, off‑season period was one the reasons that I didn't participate in the opening tournaments in 2010. Tried to work really intensively. I came ten days before Australian Open started and spent a lot of hours in the heat. I'm just happy the way I feel.

I believe that I can even play better.


Q. Are you playing well enough to win the tournament?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, look, there are some things that I obviously have to improve in order play better. But, you know, the opening rounds, especially at Australian Open, are where a lot of surprises happen.

Opening rounds are a little bit tricky because you're playing against the players that really have nothing to lose and played a little bit more matches than you. I kind of feel that little pressure. This is what I felt a little today.

As I said, I'm taking it step by step and I'm sure that in two days' time I will play even better.


Q. There's been a lot made of the 2:00 a.m. finish this morning of Cilic and Tomic. What are your feelings on the late games and late finishes?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, this is something that not me individually can discuss. I think a lot of people have to discuss about it.

In one hand, it's really good for the crowd. It's really good for the TV and that's what they want. More entertainment. Night matches is what drives fans really crazy and excited. I absolutely understand from that side.

From the other hand, maybe in Tomic side was maybe a little bit too much pressure. He got used to playing during the day and I guess that's understandable as well.


Q. How hard do you think it is for a 17 year old to deal with that way past his bedtime? What's your advice to him?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Look, I mean, he's 17 years old and he's already playing on this level. I mean, you have to give him credit for that. I played him in Kooyong and I said only good things about him. That's what I honestly feel.

I think Australia can expect a lot from him. He's a great talent. He just needs to work physically on some things and to be able to play consistently on this level throughout the year.

But as I said, you know, that all comes with the time. I mean, he's only 17.


Q. You and Roger and Rafa have been at council now for a while. Describe how that's working with the three of you. Do you feel like you have been able to see at the same level on the issues? You talked about the World Cup. What other things are important to you guys as far as the tour is concerned?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, look, I think the most important thing is that the top players are together right now, and that share more or less the same opinion. That's very important.

And we are fortunate enough to have the present leadership of the ATP very understandable on the issues that we have and on our problems that we want to solve.

So we are all working towards the future and making this sport better for players and better for everybody. It's not easy, because we have to take sides on tournaments and players and sponsors and, you know, ‑‑ there's many, many issues that we have to discuss about.

Unfortunately I can't say more than that because everything is still in the process and it's pending. Hopefully next couple of months we can make some decisions.


Q. To shorten the season, is that a high priority still?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: That is the highest priority, because players feel like the season is just too long.


Q. A lot better players like yourself have a particular trademark shot or style: Federer, movement, say, forehand; Roddick, serve.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: You tell me what's mine, because I cannot figure it out. (Laughter.) I still didn't figure out. I wanted to hear if you maybe know.

I don't know. It's hard to say. I like the backhand long line. I'm a baseline player and my game is based from that part of the court.

But, you know, I've been starting to work a lot lately on my volley game, net play, and trying to take the balls a bit earlier and use the chances and be more aggressive. Of course, the serve.

So I could say for myself that I'm all‑around player, but probably the backhand long line is...


Q. Are you searching for a style still?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, not too much. Really, I just want to get my game as far as possible. That's all. I'm not trying to copy anybody or get a particular style that is gonna look beautiful to the fans.


Q. You won the singles title last year in Belgrade. Are you happy or satisfied overall with the attendances in Serbia?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, that was a very positive thing that we had a tournament organized for the first time in the history of our sport in Serbia. I was very happy about it. Of course, it couldn't be better. I even won the title in the end, and it was very emotional.

This year we have another tournament going, and we are trying and we are really focusing to improve facilities and to make the players and all the guests who come there feel good about it.

Of course, considering the popularity of the tennis right now in our country, we definitely need to do more. Because the people love it, support tennis, and you can see, wherever we go we have lots of support.


Q. What will you be doing for the next two days? We don't have the heat wave that we normally do in Melbourne. Do you spend more time on the practice court, or stick to the same routine?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It's more or less same routine. I can't do anything in particular between the matches, you know. That's where you want to just work on some specifics and save the energy for upcoming challenge.

http://www.australianopen.com/en_AU/...049477484.html
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:43 AM   #2409
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Default Re: Novak News!!

Hana.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:53 PM   #2410
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Djokovic remains a work in progress

Thursday, January 21, 2010 Posted by Ravi Ubha, ESPN.com
http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/...ame=espntennis

Based on Thursday's display, Novak Djokovic has plenty of work to do if he intends on finally winning another major.

Not for the first time, Djokovic struggled in the Melbourne heat, with temperatures hovering around 90 degrees in his second round match. Unlike 2009, when the complex Serb fell to Andy Roddick, also seeking a second Slam, Djokovic this time survived against banged-up Swiss Marco Chiudinelli, 3-6, 6-1, 6-1, 6-3. The final three sets weren't as easy as the scores suggest.

"Look, there are some things that I obviously have to improve on," Djokovic told reporters. "But opening rounds are a little bit tricky because you're playing against the players that really have nothing to lose. I kind of feel that little pressure." Chiudinelli is a boyhood pal of Roger Federer and fellow native of Basel. The two exchanged tears as adolescents as one beat the other in tennis and often kicked around a soccer ball. Indeed, Federer's parents, Robert and Lynette, rooted for Chiudinelli in the afternoon sun.

Unless Djokovic lifts his game, and relatively fast, it seems only Nikolay Davydenko, as hot as the weather, or Fernando Verdasco can prevent Federer from reaching the second Sunday -- again. And they're scheduled to meet in the fourth round.

"There's a lot Novak could have done to have affected the first set result," coach Todd Martin, stationed near the locker room afterward, said. "But then 1, 1 and 3, granted there's a lot of work and it wasn't the typical 1, 1 and 3. But this guy puts you into a position where you have to defend, and Novak defends great. It just doesn't look easily."

Djokovic tinkered with his Australian Open preparations, opting for intense practice under the guidance of jovial Slovak Marian Vajda, his other coach. The cerebral Martin is in Oz, with Vajda back home in Bratislava. There was no warm-up tournament.

Djokovic was humbled instead by Verdasco and Bernard Tomic at an exhibition in the Melbourne suburb of Kooyong. Tomic may be a promising 17-year-old, but he's barely inside the top 300. Much of that clash was true exhibition fare. Djokovic rushed the net more than usual, often behind nothing. He hit more slices than normal and clowned around with the fans. Given his lack of match practice, perhaps a little more effort was needed.

Last year, Djokovic said he made a mistake playing tune-up events in Brisbane and Sydney. He spent a little too much time enjoying the Christmas holidays and changed his racket, which certainly didn't help.

Djokovic continues to tinker with his game, too. He's attempting to become more aggressive and venture to the net further, rather than depending on his sublime defense. The serve, a work in progress for a while, remains a worry.

Unbelievably, Djokovic was behind in each of his service games until holding for a 2-0 advantage in the third. He faced 17 break points, including two to begin the second set and one more at 1-1. Chiudinelli went 1-for-7 in the third and fourth.

"He understands why the serve went and how it went, but a bit of it is identification of what the issue is and a bit of it is being focused enough to say, 'I missed two or three in arrow, I need to straighten it out, it's not something I can swing my way out of,'" Martin said. "That said, the most critical set of the day was the second. He served 65 percent, did great."

The heat, which prompted Djokovic to retire in last year's quarterfinal against Roddick, visibly got to him. Sinking into his chair at a changeover the middle of the third set, Djokovic panted as he asked for an ice towel.

Chiudinelli was less bothered by the warmth, and a cynic would suggest he played dirty in an effort to keep Djokovic outside for as long as possible. Although Chiudinelli and Federer remain close, no love is lost between the latter and Djokovic.

At the end of the third set, Chiudinelli took his time leaving the court for a toilet break. Upon his return, he wasted a few more seconds changing his shirt. Getting back to the baseline to return serve, he offered no apology.

His career derailed because of serious knee and shoulder injuries, Chiudinelli, sporting a strapping below his left knee, took an injury time out for an ailing right foot at 0-3, game point for Djokovic in the third, not waiting for a changeover. In the first point back, Djokovic double-faulted.

Djokovic later broke his shoes mid-game but played on. He then apologized for taking an extended break during the changeover, new shoes in tow.

"I said to him, 'If that ever happens again, you have to call a timeout, you are in an unplayable situation,'" Martin said. "He said, 'No, that's not how I want to do it.'"

Truth to be told, Chiudinelli offered up a convivial postmatch handshake.

Maybe it was a front (cynic again).

The good news for Djokovic is he lands an easier foe in the third round -- journeyman Denis Istomin. He avoids Friday's baking conditions -- the forecast high is in the mid-90s -- and returns to action Saturday, when much cooler weather is predicted.

He needs a better performance.
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Old 01-21-2010, 11:57 PM   #2411
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"I said to him, 'If that ever happens again, you have to call a timeout, you are in an unplayable situation,'" Martin said. "He said, 'No, that's not how I want to do it.'"
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Old 01-23-2010, 09:11 AM   #2412
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Watched that part again and he barely moved around before changing shoes.



2010 AO Round3 v Denis Istomin

Q. Was that the best performance you've put up in the tournament so far?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Probably was, yeah, out of three matches. But, yet I don't think my opponent played on the level that he could. He was helping me out with a lot of unforced errors, and basically we didn't have a lot of long rallies.

So, you know, I just needed to be consistent and try not to ‑‑ ‑ you know, try to maintain the focus and get it over with as soon as possible. So that's what I did.


Q. It seems it's gonna be a replay of the Belgrade final against Kubot.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah definitely we talked about it in the locker room. Yeah, he's a good player, singles player, and doubles as well. I think he's playing best tennis of his life in the last year or so.

So it's ‑‑ for him, going to the fourth round, even though he got a walkover today, it's still a great result. He's a quality player. I had a tough match against him in finals, actually.

He's very aggressive and I know his style of the game. I'm gonna do everything to prepare well.


Q. You chose not to play in a ranking tournament before coming in here. What was the thinking behind that?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it was one of the main reasons is because I've played almost hundred matches last year, and it was ‑‑ I got fed up, to be honest, with tournaments and matches. I didn't have a lot of time really to recover and just to relax like most of the top players.

I already started preparing, so I ‑‑ first of all, I wasn't ‑‑ tennis‑wise I wasn't ready for those tournaments, so I didn't want to go there to play one or two matches. Didn't make any sense.

So I just decided to come here earlier, ten days before the Australian Open starts, and put in some intensive workout. That's what I did.


Q. Do you feel fresh now?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I do. Actually, I do. I think this workout is paying off.


Q. The top players say you like to work into a tournament. How much of a game like that today will actually help you?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I think at some stage in the tournament you want to have a straight‑sets win, an easy win, so you can get fast off the court and try to save all the energy as much as you can for the upcoming challenges, which are obviously gonna be more difficult.

So it was good to have the match like this.


Q. You seem to have a slightly perhaps lower profile here this year than last year. Are you enjoying that more than usual?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah, look, I think there is many other players that you can talk about that are playing well. I think the player who's a little bit undertalked is Davydenko. He's playing the best tennis of his life. He's on the roll and he's definitely one of the players that can win the title this year.

Besides him, of course Federer, Nadal, Murray, Del Potro. I think it's very exciting for the fans as well to follow the men's part of the draw and just wait and see who's gonna win the title.


Q. Has the locker room respect for Davydenko grown over the past couple months?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: In my own opinion, I don't look at him in a different way. I always had the respect for him because I always was aware of his quality as a player. He's an incredible fighter.

As I said, he was one of the players that was kind of underestimated in the last five years. He's already five years in a row in the top 10, top 5 in the world were you got to give him credit for that. Basically 80, 90% of tournaments he's reaching quarters. That proves his quality.

Lately he just stepped it up. I think he feels it as well. He feels that he can beat anyone now.


Q. Are you kind of just quitely excited about looking forward to next week? Would that be a proper descriptor?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I am excited. Of course I look forward to it. It's a big challenge for all of us. Most of the top players are still in the draw.

As I said, it's gonna be very exciting interesting for us and for the fans to see who's gonna go all the way through.
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Old 01-23-2010, 04:35 PM   #2413
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Default Re: Novak News!!

http://www.australianopen.com/en_AU/...8.html?fpos=r2
Mr Invisible

There are many terms that can be used to describe Novak Djokovic, but quiet is not one of them. Funny? Yes. Talented? Certainly. A showman? Most definitely. A bit of a looker? Surely. But quiet? Nah.

Yet the likeable Serb has been moving silently through the Australian Open 2010 draw like a shark on the hunt (all right, then, a shark with a gift for impersonations). He did drop a set against Marco Chiudinelli a couple of days back, but he soon steadied the ship and ran away with the rest of the match. And as the first week of the tournament drew to a close, he headed for the fourth round with the simplest of 6-1 6-1 6-2 wins over Denis Istomin on Saturday.

Djokovic hardly put a foot wrong, but Istomin was having a horrible day. His 11 winners were overwhelmed by 31 unforced errors – and against a player of Djokovic’s quality, that is never going to work. In just 97 minutes, Serbia’s finest was back in the locker room and looking forward to an appointment with Lukasz Kubot on Monday.

It is all so different from last year, when Djokovic and his new racquet arrived at Melbourne Park for the defence of his title. Trying desperately to keep his nerves under control, he finally succumbed to heat cramps and Andy Roddick in the quarter-finals. It was an unhappy end to his stay in Australia, but it did teach him a valuable lesson about the business of being one of the world’s true elite: winning a Grand Slam is hard, but defending one is eye-wateringly difficult.

“There were expectations that I never faced before,” Djokovic said. “I never found myself in the role of defending a Grand Slam title and I didn’t do a great job in holding my nerves by defending that title. I had a lot of ups and downs, and then unfortunately I had to retire in the quarters against Roddick due to the heat and everything. Everything kind of came up. After a great finish to the season in 2008, I started the season last year and then all the problems came, you know, mentally: me being very emotional on the court and off the court. I started thinking about too many off-court things that affected my game badly.”

Something, then, had to be done, and even after a good run through the clay court season and decent showing on the American hard courts, Djokovic was still searching for the answer. Finally, he found it in the tall and thoughtful figure of Todd Martin. Martin joined Djokovic’s team just before the US Open last year, and since then, the former champion has been feeling like his old self again.

“It’s all about details,” Djokovic said. “I can’t, for example, change my game, definitely the whole style – I can’t suddenly start to play serve and volley because that’s not me. But there are some particular things, as in movements, how you hit the ball, when you recognise the moment to get to the net, transition from defence to offence.

“So these things are very important, they are actually crucial. And when you hear that from somebody who was top five and was two times a finalist in Grand Slams and who has a name in this sport, it definitely makes a better impact. His experience is great, he’s a very positive person, he’s very calm. He brings that calmness to the team and to me particularly, which is important.”

The Djoker should be feeling quite calm about playing Kubot, the world No.86 from Poland, too: the two have only met once before, and Djokovic won in straight sets. The Pole has never been this far at a Grand Slam event before – he has only played two prior to this – and got his ticket to the last 16 when Mikhail Youzhny withdrew from their scheduled match with a right wrist injury.
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Old 01-23-2010, 06:55 PM   #2414
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Thanks both
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Old 01-25-2010, 08:41 AM   #2415
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Default Re: Novak News!!

2010 AO Round4 v Lukasz Kubot

Q. It appeared a very straightforward match. Was it on the court?


NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's the fourth round. I knew that from a seeded players, if you, you know, if you look at the draw, I probably had, you know, the best possible draw at the moment.

But I didn't want to underestimate my opponent absolutely, because I've played him the finals of Belgrade, Serbia Open last year. I knew that he's a tough opponent to play against. So I just went to the court willing to play my best from the start.

I think the first two sets I was very dominant on the court, then he lifted up his level of the game a little bit. That's why we had a longer third set. In general, I was very happy with the way I performed today.


Q. Any particular part of your game that you're happy with?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I think serve was much consistent today, much more. And I better serve percentage of the first serves.

I got more free points there, which gave me a lot of advantage.


Q. Would you have preferred to play a seeded player to give you more push and preparation into the quarters?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it doesn't ‑‑ didn't really matter, you know. If the player comes ‑‑ if he's seeded or unseeded, if he comes to the second week of play, he must be a quality player. It's a Grand Slam, you know. To reach last 16, last 8, it's not a piece of cake.

Whoever I play next round it's gonna be a tough opponent. I'm aware the matches will get more difficult throughout this week. So I'm ready for it. Physically I've been putting in a lot of work and intensity into the practice. It's paying off right now. I feel great.


Q. Australian Open is first Grand Slam of the year and of course very important to prepare well. What do you think about this so far and how important is it for you to do well in the Australian Open?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, it's the most important tournament of this part of the year for all of us. I didn't have an official match before I started Australian Open, so the opening rounds were quite challenging for me. One of the reasons is obviously that I haven't got any matches for a month and a half.

So I'm happy with the way things are going. Surface is quite suitable to my game. I won this tournament two years ago, so I just look forward to the upcoming challenges. I'm ready to give my 100% and try to get a step further.


Q. So like last year, you had feet problems. Did you do something particular for preparing this season?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, last year was specific. I think it was quite different than all the others because I had made some radical changes. I changed the racquet and I faced the role of defending champion for the first time in my career at a Grand Slam.

There were a lot of side factors. I think my game wasn't really feeling great throughout the 2009 Australian Open. This year is absolutely something else. I just feel very confident playing.


Q. You will play Almagro or Tsonga next. Can speak a little bit of those?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I haven't played Almagro for a long time. I can't really remember last time we played.

But, you know, he's a big hitter and he has a good serve and strong forehand. He's a clay court specialist but still can play really well on hardcourts. This hardcourt is a bit slower than the others, so that's where he has his chance.

On the other side, I played Jo many, many times in the last two years. Probably the biggest match that we played was finals here two years ago. He's improved so much, and he's a top 10 player. Just has a big tournaments behind him. He has been winning the big matches and knows what it feels like to be on a big stage.

So absolutely it's gonna be very difficult for either of us to play against.


Q. If you face Jo, what do you have to focus on especially?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, you know, Jo can beat anyone if he's really on the roll and if he starts hitting the ball well. I just to have keep pressuring him and just apply my style of the game, not allow him to control the match.


Q. You had a great season last year, but didn't do so well at the Grand Slams. Did it bother you to have such a wonderful season but not build on your first Grand Slam in 2008?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: In a way I was expecting a lot, especially from Roland Garros in 2009, because I had the best year on clay courts by far.

But, you know, these things happen. I could have done a bit better in the Grand Slams. I agree on that. Probably that was one of the reasons that I didn't get the step further in the rankings.

But, you know, I will prioritize Grand Slams and try to set up the best possible form for these tournaments.


Q. What do you mean by prioritize?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Just as I said, I want to try to set up the best possible form and game for Grand Slams. That's where I want to make the best impact, best result.


Q. Does that mean shortening your schedule a little bit more?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It's really hard to shorten the schedule at this moment. We have a lot of commitment events. You got to show up at, you know, 17, 18 tournaments a year, plus Davis Cup. So the season is not gonna be much shorter than the one in 2009.

There are certain things you can do in order to perform better in Grand Slams.
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